Kaija Saariaho Château de l'âme / Graal Théâtre / Amers (1996)
FLAC+CUE | 328 mb | Classical/Avant-Garde
Kaija Saariaho is not only among the most important Finnish composers of her time, but must be ranked as one of the leading composers of the late twentieth and early twenty first centuries.
She studied in Finland, Germany, and Paris, where she became acquainted with the composers of "spectral" music, who focus on music as sound and examine its constituent elements in microscopic detail. This influenced her own writing, which she describes as "more timbral than melodic, more focused on color than line."
Indeed, the two instrumental works on this disc seem created entirely from sound effects and color effects. Graal Theatre is a substantial violin concerto that exploits all imaginable, and many unimaginable, resources of the instrument and demands superhuman tonal and technical acrobatics of the soloist. Kremer, of course, clears all these hurdles with ease and aplomb; the beauty of his tone comes through at every opportunity. These are almost nonexistent in the cello concerto, Amers, in which the soloist is reduced to running, scratching, and squeaking. The five-song set Chateau de L'ame is the most accessible: sung beautifully, it is mainly lyrical, atmospheric, languid, and mournful, with big leaps in the vocal line and much lighter orchestration than in the concertos. The composer confirms that "vocal music written to strong texts seems more emotional," because the words enhance the music and because "the human voice touches us differently than any other instrument." –Edith Eisler
1. Graal Theatre: Delicato
2. Graal Theatre: Impetuoso
3. Chateau De L'Ame: La Liane
4. Chateau De L'Ame: A La Terre
5. Chateau De L'Ame: La Liane
6. Chateau De L'Ame: Pour Repousser L'Esprit
7. Chateau De L'Ame: Les Formules
8. Amers: Libero, Dolce, Misterioso
9. Amers: Sempre Molto Energico, Ma Espresivo